December 13, 2018


SACP withdrawal could worsen ANC ties

The South African Community Party (SACP)’s decision this week to cut ties with the ruling ANC and subsequent public tiffs between the political buddies could further sour relations and set the two on a debilitating and excruciating coalition course.

ANC provincial secretary William Bulwane said the decision by the SACP to withdraw itself from the alliance was wrong, calling for internal discussions to resolve any difference between the two.
He said, “Disintegration is not a solution, moreover so when there was reason why we came together in the first place. This is not the way to go about things.”

Bulwane said the two parties would meet to discuss the SACP’s concerns, without giving out any dates.

However, Pastor Sello Dire, a vocal member of Bertha Gxowa Foundation had no kind words for the SACP, accusing the party of cheap politicking.

Dire said calls made by the communist party were a spit in the face of Premier Ace Magashule, leader of the ruling party in the province.

“This is a spit in the face of the premier, moreover so on the work he has done in changing the lives of ordinary people in the province for the better,” he noted.

“Every time there is a conference of the ANC looming, the SACP conveniently raises issues in order to market themselves and put the ANC in a bad light. We are therefore not surprised by their current stance.”

Dire further called on the SACP to subject themselves to the principle of the alliance and refrain from being ‘chameleons’.

Addressing the media on Wednesday, SACP provincial secretary Bekhumuzi Stofile announced they had resolved to participate in elections as a stand-alone party, accusing the ANC of being a corrupt movement preoccupied with looting state resources and neglecting the poor.

Stofile said, “We entered this struggle to change the lives of the ordinary citizens of our country; the working class and poor communities. What we have been seeing over a period of time is an organisation that was given that responsibility to lead the NDP (National Development Plan) in this phase but has failed to do so.”

He claimed instead of delivering on its mandate, the ANC decided to focus on other matters which “we refer to in the political report as peripheral issues”.

The outspoken secretary noted the SACP had written letters to the ruling party which were not responded to, saying the only time the two sides had a meeting was on May 2 to discuss the fallout of the May Day rally.

“Since then we have been given a run around,” he said, further stating that it was improper to suggest that the SACP had been mum on issues of service delivery that they are not happy with.

Stofile cited the challenge of water in Qwa Qwa saying, “The problem in Qwa Qwa is long overdue and we can’t pretend it’s not there. It has been going on for three years now and has not been attended to,” he said.

As a temporary measure, water tanks are being distributed to the affected parts but the SACP does not see this as a solution and questions who is benefiting from them.

Stofile also added Xhariep was facing the same problem where water was by-passing residents to other parts of the country.

“With these issues, can the ANC still say it’s a caring organisation,” he quipped.

Asked whether these issues could not be raised within the structures of the party, Stofile contended the SACP had lost confidence in the provincial leadership of the ANC.

In a media statement, the Free State ANC Youth League welcomed the decision made by the SACP, saying it was long overdue.

The league said it had also long called for the recalling of all the SACP leaders deployed by the ANC into positions of responsibility, “starting with the current provincial secretary of the SACP in the Free State province who has effectively declared his lack of confidence in the organisation he is supposed to represent”.

It added: “Whilst we have noted the mediocre public relations exercise by the SACP to backtrack on their official position, stating that they will await a decision by their national Congress, we believe that they can best await that irrelevant decision whilst outside government and focus on their handful of branches and membership.”

The league further accused the SACP of abandoning its socialist struggle and choosing to lead with “personality cult politics.”

The youth also called on the ANC to act swiftly and replace all deployees representing the SACP with focused members and graduates of the ANCYL.

The league has specifically called on the ruling party to recall Stofile who is also the speaker of the Matjhabeng Local Municipality from his paying government post.

It noted this is because of Stofile’s organisation’s recent pronouncements on severing ties with the ANC in the province.

On top of this, the league said, it also has banned SACP leaders from addressing any ANC gatherings as a direct response to the former having done so first.

Asked to comment on the calls yesterday, Stofile chose to refer The Weekly to his party saying, “I would not like to entertain the talks by the youth league in this space, rather I can only advice that the matter be responded to by the YCL (Young Communist League).”
The provincial secretary of the ANC Youth League in the province Sello Pietersen yesterday said Stofile should be recalled for having openly declared their lack of confidence in the ruling party in the province, as well as his organisation’s decision over the weekend to severe long standing ties with the ANC.

Pietersen said the fall of the reds must start with Stofile from his position since he “effectively declared his lack of confidence in the organisation he is supposed.”

“The SACP, just like COSATU must know that they cannot forever make threats to the ANC and think that only they have monopoly of taking radical political decisions,” he noted.

The youth leader further warned the SACP going it alone in the 2009 general elections would lead to its hammering and an end to lucrative government perks as officials.

Pietersen said the communist party in the province was insignificant and cutting ties with the ANC would have little or no effect on the performance of the ruling party in the general elections of 2019.

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